Including indirect taxes in EUROMOD
Two research projects aiming to extend the policy scope of EUROMOD to include indirect taxes, financed by the European Commission Joint Research Centre (Institute for Prospective Technological Studies).
This will allow a more comprehensive assessment of the effects of policy changes on households than is currently possible with EUROMOD; it will enable analysis of the effects of shifting taxes away from labour; and offers the potential for tax system ‘greening’ assessments.
The two projects are designed to pilot a method already developed by the EUROMOD Belgian team from KU Leuven to cover four new countries. This involves imputing expenditure information from Household Budget Survey microdata into the EU-SILC microdata used by EUROMOD. One, led by ISER, is focussing on Italy and Spain and involves the EUROMOD Italian team (Francesco Figari, Carlo Fiorio and Chiara Gigliarano) and Olga Cantó Sánchez of the University of Alcalá. The other, conducted by KU Leuven, is focussing on France and Germany. We hope that the two studies will provide a sound basis for extending indirect tax simulation in EUROMOD to more, and eventually all, the EU member states.
See here for a paper describing the method, as applied to Belgium for VAT
NEUJOBS is a collaborative research project (2011-2015), funded by the European Commission under the FP7 programme.
It brings together nearly 30 research institutions, and is led by the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS). Its objective is to assess the implications for the European labour markets of the four broad types of processes in the societies: socio-ecological transition, demographic changes, spatial dynamics and skills transition. One of its strands aims to project occupational, skills and geographical distribution of labour supply, labour demand, and employment in the EU in 2030 and consider the impact on the income distribution. This work is largely based on micro-simulation modelling, EUROMOD in particular, and involves ISER collaborating with the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
Social Situation Monitor
The Social Situation Monitor carries out policy-relevant analysis and research on the current EU socio-economic situation on the basis of the most recent available data. Each year it examines major issues which are features of the situation or affect it with the aim of providing evidence on which to base policy-making across the EU.
This initiative is directed by Applica (Belgium) on behalf of the European Commission. It includes the European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research (Austria), Tárki Social Research Institute (Hungary), ISER at the University of Essex (UK) and the Athens University of Economics and Business (Greece).
In the FLEMOSI (FLEmish MOdels of SImulation) project, five international partners have joined forces, led by the the Center for Economic Studies at KU Leuven, to build a toolbox of state-of-the-art models to evaluate ex ante policy changes in Flanders.
The starting point is EUROMOD which is being extended to cover specific Flemish competences.
These models are aimed at three different stakeholder groups:
- policy makers will be able to assess the budgetary impact of policy measures as they are designed and get an immediate view on the estimated effects on poverty and welfare;
- Civil society and the general public can use slimmed-down versions of the models online. In this way the public debate can be fostered and enriched; and
- the up-to-date FLEMOSI-models will allow the academic community to integrate the often complex Flemish tax-benefit system in advanced theoretical and empirical models.
InGRID is funded by the European Commission’s 7th Framework Programme under the ‘Capacities’ heading and involves 17 European partners.
The general objectives of InGRID – Inclusive Growth Research Infrastructure Diffusion – are to integrate and to innovate existing, but distributed European social sciences research infrastructures On ‘Poverty and Living Conditions’, ‘Working Conditions and Vulnerability’ and ‘Policy Analysis’ by providing transnational data access, organising mutual knowledge exchange activities and improving methods and tools for comparative research.
This integration will provide the European scientific community with new and better opportunities to fulfil its key role in the development of evidence-based European policies for inclusive growth.
Three types of activities will be organised:
- joint research to improve quality, accessibility and comparability of the existing infrastructures;
- the organisation of expert workshops and summer schools in order to promote knowledge transfer; and
- researchers from other institutes and countries are invited to visit the participating expert centres (‘transnational access’).
Training in the use of EUROMOD and transnational access to use it in a supported setting will be offered by three of the centres, including ISER. Calls will be opened for these and other activities four times a year.
Several EUROMOD teams are participating in ImPRovE, a project that is financially supported by the European Commission and coordinated by the University of Antwerp.
As part of this project, EUROMOD will be used to analyse policy drivers of poverty outcomes in the past, estimate the impact of the crisis and ensuing austerity measures, as well as to develop budget-neutral policy scenarios for reaching the Europe 2020 poverty reduction target. In addition, it will be used to analyse the distributive effects of childcare in a number of European countries, as well as to evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of targeted and conditional benefits.
Within ImPRovE, EUROMOD-related analyses are part of a broader research agenda that also includes the development of cross-nationally comparable reference budgets, an in-depth study of local forms of social innovation, and an evaluation of policies aimed at improving the condition of minorities such as the Roma. The two central questions of ImPRovE are:
- How can social cohesion be achieved in Europe?
- How can social innovation complement, reinforce and modify macro-level policies and vice versa?
The ImPRovE project aims at improving the basis for evidence-based policy making in Europe in the area of poverty, inequality, social policy and social innovation in Europe.
In the short term, this is done by carrying out research that is directly relevant for policymakers. At the same time however, ImPRovE invests in improving the long-term capacity for evidence-based policy making by upgrading the available research infrastructure, by combining both applied and fundamental research, and by optimising the information flow of research results to relevant policy makers and the civil society at large.
Among others, the output of ImPRovE will include about 55 research papers and 16 policy briefs. In addition the ImPRovE Consortium will organise two international conferences.
AIM-AP was an integrated programme of research and development funded by the European Commission (Sixth Framework Programme) aimed at improving the comparability, scope and applicability of tools, methods and data for the measurement of income and the analysis of the effects of policies on inequality, poverty and social inclusion. It started in February 2006 and finished in January 2009.
The main emphasis of the programme was on the appropriate measurement of income (and its components) as the basis for an improved understanding of the effects of social and fiscal policies, better-informed monitoring of the Social Inclusion process and better policy design. The programme consisted of three projects:
- Non-cash incomes and the implementation of a more comprehensive income definition
- The implications of (and methods to account for) errors in targeting social benefits, tax evasion and measurement error in income data
- Incorporation of the effects of indirect taxes, along with direct taxes and social benefits, in redistribution analysis
All three projects were designed to improve the degree of comparability of measurement and analysis across countries. Each project focused on a different sub-set of EU countries and developed methodologies within a cross-national perspective, demonstrating their applicability to a wide range of research questions.
The resulting data and method enhancements have been made generally accessible and re-useable by implementing them within EUROMOD. Project partners included:
- Institute for Social and Economic Research
- Centre for Economic Research and Environmental Strategy
- Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
- Economic & Social Research Institute
- Deutsches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung
- European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research
- CentERdata, Universiteit van Tilburg
- Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
- Luxembourg Income Study
- Universiteit Antwerpen
- The Rural Economy Research Centre